Formatting Your Book Files Using InDesign – Part 1

Now that you’ve made some decisions about how you want your book to look, it’s time to format your book for print. One of the many applications available for producing not only a great looking printed book but also the files you’ll need for your Kindle and ePub versions is Adobe InDesign®. Since this application is available on a monthly subscription basis, you don’t have to pay big bucks to own it – simply purchase a one-month subscription and use the app as much as you need. Renew the subscription if you’d like, or allow the subscription to lapse until you need it again.

Bookfiles and Chapter Files
Each of the chapters and the various front matter and back-of-the-book files for your book will be separate InDesign files. All of these files are then pulled into a book file. From the book file, you’ll be able to output a PDF for print, output an ePub file that can be used for Nook, iTunes, Smashwords, and Kobo, and, with a free downloadable plug-in from Amazon, a .mobi file for Kindle.

Book Template for Novels
Novels generally have four sections:

  1. Front matter, which includes a title page, copyright page, and dedication page
  2. Manuscript, which includes some number of chapters and possibly a prologue and epilogue
  3. Excerpt featuring a future book
  4. About the Author page

Note: You’ll need a table of contents if you’ll be making an ePub and/or .mobi file from InDesign, but you won’t use it for print purposes.

Book Template – Overall

An overall template can be used to help format the individual files that make up your book. Check with your publisher for guidelines for gutters and margins. The page count and paper choice will determine the width of your gutter. To create a book template, launch InDesign and perform the following steps:

  1. Choose File > New > Document
  2. In the dialog box,
    1. Set up your template page
      1. Size = 5 x 8″ (or whatever size you want your printed book to be)
      2. Facing pages
      3. Larger gutter margin than outside margins; f the gutter = 0.75″, then the outer margins = 0.25, 0.375 or 0.5″ depending on page count
      4. Top and bottom margins = 0.5 to 1.0″
      5. Header and footers = 0.25″ to 0.5″ from top and bottom
  3. Click Save Preset and assign a name for future use (such as Paperback)

new_document

Master Pages

When working in InDesign, you’ll just need just three master pages for your book – A, B, and C. Their page sizes will be based on the dimensions you set up in the prior section. To set up a master page, perform the following steps in the InDesign file you created above:

  1. Choose Window > Pages
  2. In the Pages palette, select New Master …  new_master
  3. Set up a Master A, B and C based on the guidelines shown below
    1. On the master page spreads, use the text tool (T) to click and drag out the text boxes for the headers, footers and text areas. Position them according to the margins set up in your document.
    2. Type in the information that will appear on every page (see below)
    3. For page numbers, choose Type > Insert Special Character > Current Page Number. Be sure the page numbers are positioned at the outside margin – not in the gutter!
  4. To select a master page, simply click its icon in the Pages palette or choose Layout > Pages > Master Pages
    A is a two-page spread with headers, footers and text blocks.

      The left header is for your author name in the italics version of your book’s main font.
      The right header is for your book’s name in the italics version of your book’s main font.
    B is a two-page spread with footer, chapter start and a text block that starts around two inches below the top margin.
    C is a two-page spread with no headers or footers – just a text block for use on your title, copyright, dedication/acknowledgement, introduction to excerpt, excerpt, and author pages.

pages

Setting Up and Formatting Front Matter Files

Title Page

title_page

To set up your book’s title page in InDesign, perform the following steps:

  1. Choose File > New > Document.
  2. Select the preset template you set up earlier
  3. Choose File > Save As and give it a logical filename without spaces (such as titlepage.indd)
  4. Apply master page C
  5. Choose Window > Paragraph Styles   paragraph_styles
  6. From the Paragraph Styles palette (click the upper right corner), select New Paragraph Style  paragraph_style_dialog
  7. Assign “Style Name” to be BookTitle 
  8. Select “Basic Character Formats” and choose your Font Family and Size and Leading

    • Note: For a title font, choose one appropriate to your genre and make it large, but not so it overpowers your page. Take a look at some paperbacks you have on hand to use as guides. paragraph_style_booktitle
  9. Select “Indents and Spacing” and set the Alignment to Centeredparagraph_style_body_indent
  10. Click OK
  11. In the page window, type in your book’s title and click the paragraph style in the Paragraph Styles palette to apply the style to your book title
  12. Repeat steps 5 through 9 to create an Author style and type in your author name  basic_character_formatsindents_and_spacing
  13. If you have an imprint or logo for your publishing company, insert it centered near the bottom of the page. Be sure the image is in JPG format and sized to its finished printed size at 300 dpi.
  14. Choose File > Save

Copyright Page

To set up your book’s title page in InDesign, perform the following steps:

  1. Choose File > New > Document
  2. Select the preset template you set up earlier
  3. Choose File > Save As and give it a logical filename without spaces (such as copyright.indd)
  4. Apply master page C
  5. Choose Window > Paragraph Styles
  6. From the Paragraph Styles palette, select New Paragraph Style
  7. Assign “Style Name” to be Copyright
  8. Select “Basic Character Formats” and choose your Font Family and Size = 8 pt. and Leading = 9.5 pt.
  9. Select “Indents and Spacing” and set the Alignment to Left
  10. Type the following information for your copyright information:
    1. Boilerplate for fiction
    2. Book title
    3. All Rights Reserved
    4. © Year Author Name
    5. Cover image © <name of where purchased>. All rights reserved. Used with permission.
    6. Credit / Copyright for cover design
    7. Publisher name and website
    8. ISBN
    9. Library of Congress # (if you have it)
    10. Trademark statements (if applicable)
    11. Printed in <Country Name>

The e-book version of the copyright page should include all but the “Printed in” line as well as the boilerplate information for e-books. If you’re distributing through Smashwords, follow their guidelines for what to include.

  1. Choose Page > Insert Page to add a blank second page (the back side of the Copyright page will be blank in a printed book)
  2. Choose File > Save.

Dedication or Acknowledgement Page

dedication

To set up your book’s Dedication or Acknowledgements page, perform the following steps:

  1. Choose File > New > Document
  2. Select the preset template you set up earlier
  3. Choose File > Save As and give it a logical filename without spaces (such as dedication.indd)
  4. Apply master page C
  5. Choose Window > Paragraph Styles
  6. From the Paragraph Styles palette, select New Paragraph Style
  7. Assign “Style Name” to be Dedication
  8. Select “Basic Character Formats” and choose your Font Family and Size = 11 or 12 pt. and Leading = 13.5 or 14.5 pt.
  9. Select “Indents and Spacing” and set the Alignment to Centered
  10. Adjust the text bock to start 2″ below the top margin
  11. Type your dedication and / or acknowledgements
  12. Choose Page > Insert Page to add a blank second page (if your acknowledgements fill less than one page)
  13. Choose File > Save.

Now that you have the files complete for your front matter, it’s time to start the chapter files.  I’ll cover the steps for those files in my next post.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s